News in Brief
Contrary to rumors apparently flying around the upper Roaring Fork Valley, the Aspen School District is planning to start school on time, in all three buildings on the public schools campus on Maroon Creek Road.Aspen High School will begin first on Aug. 24, followed by Aspen Middle School and Aspen Elementary School, both on Aug. 28.Ongoing construction projects at the elementary and middle school buildings will make school life challenging for the coming year, Superintendent Diana Sirko acknowledged recently. But the buses will be rolling as scheduled, she said, and classes will start on time.Classes for the district’s charter school, the Aspen Community School in Woody Creek, will begin with a full day Aug. 29.For more information, check the district’s website, http://www.aspenk12.net
Several law enforcement agencies will team up Saturday to establish a DUI checkpoint for traffic on Highway 82 between Basalt and El Jebel, according to the Basalt Police Department.The checkpoint will be around mile marker 20, according to Sgt. Joe Chavira of Basalt. Traffic will be diverted onto old Highway 82, which is now a frontage road that serves the Christ Community Church, he said. Officers will check to see if drivers have been drinking. The DUI checks will start around 6 p.m. and likely run well into the night.Chavira said the agencies publicized the checkpoint because the ultimate goal is to get drunk drivers off the road, not necessarily to make arrests. “We’re looking to prevent that stuff [drunken driving] from happening.”Motorists will be alerted in advance of the checkpoint and will have the option of skirting it by taking Willits Lane, Chavira said.Participating agencies are Basalt, Carbondale, Glenwood Springs, New Castle, Silt, Rifle, Eagle and Garfield counties, and the Colorado State Patrol. Police departments from outside the midvalley are helping because they share a grant from the Law Enforcement Assistance Fund.
The review of a development proposal in El Jebel that includes a three- or four-star hotel was postponed Thursday and rescheduled for Sept. 7.The developers of the Tavaci project asked for the delay to give them time to respond to concerns raised by the Eagle County planning staff, according to county planner Joe Forinash. The county planning staff didn’t recommend approval because the land-use master plan for that part of El Jebel didn’t contemplate a resort development of that “magnitude,” according to a July 20 staff memo.In addition to a high-end condominium-hotel with 132 units, the project includes 28 hotel duplexes and nature cabins, 92,000 square feet of commercial space mixed with 77 dwellings, and 24 new single-family-home lots.The project was proposed on the property of Ace and Jennifer Lane, across from the El Jebel City Market complex and just east of the El Jebel shopping mall. There is currently a tree nursery and water ski pond on the Lane land.
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The Wheeler Opera House will remain dark into 2021, with current COVID-19 public health orders in place. Meanwhile, the masonry work on the exterior of the building will continue into July.